An old posting about why intermittency is not a big deal came to my attention today. I re-read some of what had been said, especially when I had just sent out a paper on the topic yesterday.
I believe that the value of electric “energy” is often overstated. The author of the old posting, Chris Varrone, inadvertently acknowledges this when he wrote
However, the energy in wind is worth 100% of the energy in nuclear (or anything else) in the spot market; wind energy in the day-ahead market may be worth a little less, but this can be “firmed” using energy trading desks or by using other assets in the operator’s fleet.
If the day to day differential can be handled by firming with other assets, then the value of the electricity is not just energy. It is not worth debating what to call this other value, but a substantial part of the value in the spot market is something other than energy.
As to The Goldilocks Dilemma, the paper I sent out yesterday, I began by asking
Is the price paid to dispatchable generation too high, too low, or just right for intermittent generation?
I then answer
Though intermittent generators often argue that they should receive the same price as dispatchable generation and some utilities argue that they should pay less to intermittent generators, sometimes intermittent generators should face a higher price than dispatchable generators, such as when intermittent generation is part of the market during instances of extreme shortage.
The entire paper is available on my web site, the companion to this blog site. Look for the hot link to the library near the bottom of the first page. A hot link for the article is near the bottom of library index in the section called drafts.